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HG and BW reach an agreement (Link included)


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If this is a joke....

Let's have our resident legal experts wade in on this, but if I can get proper Stateside Blu-Ray and toy releases, woohoo!!!

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Translation from DeepL Translate:

"Long-standing, exclusive worldwide license outside of Japan for Harmony Gold to use 41 Macross characters and mecha in the Robotech television series and related merchandising.

The two companies will now work together to develop future Macross and Robotech projects for the benefit of both series.

Kamon Onishi, President of Vicwest: "We are very pleased to be working with Robotech.
The story is set against the backdrop of a diva's song, and is characterized by the Valkyrie, a realistic transforming mecha in the galaxy, and the love triangle between the diva and the pilot. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to HG Chairman Frank Agrama for his courageous decision to bring the Macross series, which has been and will continue to be based on this concept, to the people of the world in its 40th anniversary year.

Frank Aglama, Chairman of Harmony Gold USA
Frank Aglama, Chairman of Harmony Gold USA: "This is an unparalleled historic moment for both Harmony Gold and Vic West, and for the entire animation industry. It is also an amazing moment for Robotech and Macross fans around the world. I would like to thank my friend Kamon Onishi, President of BicWest, for his efforts in helping us reach this long awaited resolution that will protect both series and create a better tomorrow for both companies."

Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)

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Holy crap. I never thought I’d see the day. 
 

Wonder how much Covid had to do with this, in terms of losses, so that BW and HG HAD to get into bed together?

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Could it be that the turning point was the upcoming robotech movie? That seems what HG wanted and all the gold that would come with it, compared to the what they are earning now on robotech merch.

And BigWest used it to break the embargo once and for all. 

Either way it’s a resolution hopefully.

Now what would happen it the movie doesn’t turn out to be made lol....

Edited by seti88
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TBH, I kind of expected this was the direction things were heading.

Harmony Gold had already lost the fight for the Macross trademarks in almost every key market in the world.  Big West had obtained all the leverage it needed to effectively shut down the Robotech franchise outside of the Americas.  With the Robotech franchise devoid of any realistic future prospects, it was more or less inevitable that Harmony Gold would look for a way out either by bending the knee to Big West in order to obtain a percentage of the profits from Macross releases worldwide or sell their stake to someone else who would.

Harmony Gold bent the knee, brothers.

We have won.

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2 minutes ago, Seto Kaiba said:

TBH, I kind of expected this was the direction things were heading.

Harmony Gold had already lost the fight for the Macross trademarks in almost every key market in the world.  Big West had obtained all the leverage it needed to effectively shut down the Robotech franchise outside of the Americas.  With the Robotech franchise devoid of any realistic future prospects, it was more or less inevitable that Harmony Gold would look for a way out either by bending the knee to Big West in order to obtain a percentage of the profits from Macross releases worldwide or sell their stake to someone else who would.

Harmony Gold bent the knee, brothers.

We have won.

Amen!!

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Before we all start bashing HG here, I did not get 'bend at the knee' out of that at all.

It says

"The agreement also recognizes Harmony Gold’s longstanding exclusive license with Tatsunoko for the use of the 41 Macross characters and mecha in the Robotech television series and related merchandise throughout the world excluding Japan."

So if you are in the US, as most fans are on this site, HG still is the Macross TV (and dyrl?) licensor.

Which implies we can get Frontier and Delta here and new series, but the OG Macross is still HG, and with their license with Toynami still in effect, I doubt we'll be seeing DX VF-1 Valkyries here anytime soon.

 

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The english version on the portal says:

 

Quote

April 9, 2021, Tokyo, Japan: Landmark agreement between the anime companies will allow immediate international distribution of most Macross television sequels and films, while affirming Harmony Gold’s rights to the Robotech franchise. Both companies will cooperate on the international distribution of future Macross and Robotech projects post 2021.

Tokyo based BIGWEST CO.,LTD. and Los Angeles based Harmony Gold U.S.A. announced an agreement regarding the worldwide rights for the legendary Macross and Robotech franchises. This expansive agreement signed by both companies on March 1, 2021, ends two decades of disagreements and will allow Bigwest and Harmony Gold to chart a new path that will unlock the great potential of both the Macross and Robotech franchises worldwide. The landmark agreement immediately permits worldwide distribution of most of the Macross films and television sequels worldwide, and also confirms that Bigwest will not oppose the Japanese release of an anticipated upcoming live-action Robotech film. The agreement also recognizes Harmony Gold’s longstanding exclusive license with Tatsunoko for the use of the 41 Macross characters and mecha in the Robotech television series and related merchandise throughout the world excluding Japan. Moving forward, both parties will cooperate on distribution regarding future Macross and Robotech projects for the benefit of both franchises.

Bigwest Representative Director, Kaya Onishi added,“Stories that feature Valkyries, a transformable realistic mecha, in action among the galaxies while diva's sing in the background, as well as love triangles involving the pilots and singers. That was and continues to be the concept behind the Macross series, and I am happy that I can now help bring Macross to people all over the world on the 40th anniversary of the series. I would like to express my deepest gratitude to Harmony Gold Chairman, Frank Agrama for his courageous decision in this matter.”

Harmony Gold USA Chairman, Frank Agrama stated, “This is an incomparably historic moment for both Harmony Gold and Bigwest and the anime industry overall. This is also an exciting moment for fans of Robotech and Macross worldwide. I thank my friend, Bigwest Representative Director, Kaya Onishi for her hard work to help us reach this long desired resolution that protects both of our franchises while building a better tomorrow for both our companies.”

 

So the infamous Robotech movie, maybe it will be made. And I say maybe, because this is not certain of anything.

In other words, as much as we talk about Robotech this, and Robotech the other, we must remember that the Robotech franchise is dead in much of the world, no one knows it, much less remember it, and often people confuse it with Transformers .

At least what I have seen and witnessed in recent times.

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1 minute ago, Shawn said:

"The agreement also recognizes Harmony Gold’s longstanding exclusive license with Tatsunoko for the use of the 41 Macross characters and mecha in the Robotech television series and related merchandise throughout the world excluding Japan."

That's not a concession of any kind from Big West.

The validity of that license was never disputed by Big West... only by third parties like FASA, Catalyst Game Labs, etc.

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Just now, Ikaruss said:

 

So the infamous Robotech movie, maybe it will be made.

Nah, they still can't use those designs. 

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If true, nothing much will change that I can see.

Of course, if true, the Macross anime-titles will now be officially available again outside of Japan, tho I reckon most (if not all) Macross fans already have either downloaded and/or imported the japanese dvd's and bd's throughout the years.

I reckon BW really wants more people to suffer Delta. :rofl:

Toy-wise, it remains to be seen if Bandai and Arcadia will actually ramp up productions to sell their toys outside of Japan.

Especially Bandai.

I very much doubt the the pricing will be lower than what we importers have gotten from the various regular import-shops (including the current covid-expensive shipping-fees). What's the current P-Bandai USA for available SOCs or Gundam Metal Builds pricing, anyway?

It'll be interesting to know more and stuff about this "agreement".
 

 

:girl_devil:

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Thinking back to the recent comics.  Is this the reason why TR Edwards had to die, continuities with elements from Robotech II, Robotech 3000, Shadow Chronicles, etc. showed up again just to be given a dubious grand finale, and a Nikki Basara clone now exists in Robotech?

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12 minutes ago, Shawn said:

Before we all start bashing HG here, I did not get 'bend at the knee' out of that at all.

It says

"The agreement also recognizes Harmony Gold’s longstanding exclusive license with Tatsunoko for the use of the 41 Macross characters and mecha in the Robotech television series and related merchandise throughout the world excluding Japan."

So if you are in the US, as most fans are on this site, HG still is the Macross TV (and dyrl?) licensor.

Which implies we can get Frontier and Delta here and new series, but the OG Macross is still HG, and with their license with Toynami still in effect, I doubt we'll be seeing DX VF-1 Valkyries here anytime soon.

 

It was probably their primary sticking pint and escape route (if necessary). But if HG is sharing movie rights/revenue, they most certainly bent the knee.

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17 minutes ago, Shawn said:

Before we all start bashing HG here, I did not get 'bend at the knee' out of that at all.

If BW gets to distribute all Macross shows after DYRL across the world, then yes, HG was forced to abandon the claim that they have the rights to All Macross.

 

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I'm cautiously optimistic, but mostly cautious. I guess we'll see what comes of this news in time. If we do get Macross Blu-ray or 4k releases in the west, then I hope we also get good encodes. Seeing Funimation's name nested alongside BW and HG doesn't give me a lot of confidence in that regard, though. Getting improved access to the cool toys and models would make up for all that, of course. ^_^

Edited by technoblue
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10 minutes ago, treatment said:

If true, nothing much will change that I can see.

Of course, if true, the Macross anime-titles will now be officially available again outside of Japan, tho I reckon most (if not all) Macross fans already have either downloaded and/or imported the japanese dvd's and bd's throughout the years.

I reckon BW really wants more people to suffer Delta. :rofl:

Toy-wise, it remains to be seen if Bandai and Arcadia will actually ramp up productions to sell their toys outside of Japan.

Especially Bandai.

I very much doubt the the pricing will be lower than what we importers have gotten from the various regular import-shops (including the current covid-expensive shipping-fees). What's the current P-Bandai USA for available SOCs or Gundam Metal Builds pricing, anyway?

It'll be interesting to know more and stuff about this "agreement".
 

 

:girl_devil:

This point actually has me wondering the most.  SOme of us old timers remember when the Macross Plus toys were first about to hit, the OG 1:72s.  HG had a sort of deal with Bandai and Yamato to allow the creation of a subsidiary company, Sunwest IIRC, to distribute the Valks stateside.  HG would have their sticker on the boxes and get a cut.  Things were going well then relatively last minute HG pulled the plug on the deal because they figured they could get more money by making and selling their own toys, which, of course, kicked off the bigger legal battle.  I wonder if they might revisit that deal, allow distro of all Macross products, so long as they get their cut.  It just remains to be seen if those HG stickers will only go on SDF and DYRL based merch or all.

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Funimation is Sony, and probably a big part of how this deal went through.

There's still music rights to consider but if they can bring over Symphogear and whatnot I'm sure they can bring over Macross.

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3 minutes ago, technoblue said:

I'm cautiously optimistic, but mostly cautious. I guess we'll see what comes of this news in time. If we do get Macross Blu-ray or 4k releases in the west, then I hope we also get good encodes. Seeing Funimation's name nested alongside BW and HG doesn't give me a lot of confidence in that regard, though. Getting improved access to the cool toys and models would make up for all that, of course. ^_^

Definitely; I would dearly love to see some stuff in the stores like it used to be back in the 80's and early 90's.

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I know this news just dropped but does this mean buying a toy or model kit here in the states will be an actual thing?

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1 minute ago, 505thAirborne said:

I know this news just dropped but does this mean buying a toy or model kit here in the states will be an actual thing?

Potentially?  It's down to distribution licenses at this point, I suppose.

You could very well see Macross plamodels cheek by jowl with gunpla in Barnes and Noble in the near future.

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6 minutes ago, Gerli said:

If BW gets to distribute all Macross shows after DYRL across the world, then yes, HG was forced to abandon the claim that they have the rights to All Macross.

 

Yeah- I guess I can look at it that way as a positive out of this, that wording helps a lot.
All the new series stuff (post original TV/DYRL) is now potentially available for us to get outside of Japan without a fight, so that is a positive for sure.

And I can now look forward to collecting a Japanese "Robotech the Live Action Movie" poster in the future. Wow, that really is a hard one to visualize LOL

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